ST Sessions: Indonesia's Neonomora wants to break female singer stereotypes in her country

Indonesian singer Neonomora is a fiercely independent artist who does not believe in giving to what is popular among the general crowd. Her newest album, Seeds, was released last year, 2014. -- SCREENGRAB: RAZOR TV
Indonesian singer Neonomora is a fiercely independent artist who does not believe in giving to what is popular among the general crowd. Her newest album, Seeds, was released last year, 2014. -- SCREENGRAB: RAZOR TV

Indonesian singer Neonomora has a mission - to shatter all stereotypes or preconceived notions of what a female pop singer in her country should look or sound like.

"You don't get to see girls wearing black and singing in Indonesia," the 27-year-old, whose real name is Ratih Suryahutamy, told ST Sessions as she and her band became the first South-east Asian band to be featured in this live music performance series by The Straits Times.

"Girls wearing pink and singing, that's the thing, the perspective that I want to change."

Born in Jakarta and raised in Australia and China, she is a fiercely independent artist who does not believe in giving to what is popular among the general crowd. Her newest album, Seeds, was released last year, 2014.

"I believe that we have so many talents but then we are very oppressed by the opinion that, you cannot follow your own ideas, you need to follow the mainstream and that's quite stupid somehow."

One of her singles, You Want My Love, for example, takes aim at the way love songs by women make them seem passive. She said: "I wanted to change the perspective in the lyrics, from being "I love you, please love me too" to "you want my love". That's the kind of thing I want to change."

Her mix of pop, electronica, folk and jazz has been winning praise in Indonesia.

Rolling Stone Indonesia included her self-titled debut EP in their list of best Indonesian albums released in 2013 while entertainment media NET.TV nominated her in their Breakthrough Artist of The Year award in 2014.

"These days, you need to explore things. My generation, they want to listen to new things every day and I think we need to explore more in music and to merge those genres into one."

dinohadi@sph.com.sg

Watch more and connect with Neonomora.

Website: www.neonomora.com

Facebook: www.facebook.com/neonomora

YouTube: www.youtube.com/neonomora

Twitter: www.twitter.com/neonomora

Full list of ST Sessions acts in Season One

List of ST Sessions acts in ongoing Season Two